Prison Bankers Cash in on Captive Customers

Prison Bankers Cash in on Captive Customers

Editor’s note: This is the first in a two-part series examining how financial companies charge high fees to the families of prison inmates. The second part, which will run Thursday, focuses on no-bid deals between Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase & Co. and the U.S. Treasury, under which they provide financial services to the federal Bureau of Prisons. This piece is part of a joint investigation with CNBC, whose coverage can be found here.

JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. — Pat Taylor doesn’t believe in going into debt. She keeps her bills in a freezer bag under her bed, next to old photo albums, and believes in paying them on time religiously. For Taylor, living within your means is part of being a good Christian.

Lately, Taylor, 64, has felt torn between that commitment and her desire to be a loving, supportive mother for her son Eddie.

Eddie, 38, is serving 20-year prison sentence at Bland Correctional Center for armed robbery. He’s doing his time at a medium-security Virginia state prison located 137 miles northwest of Johnson City, across the dips and valleys of the Blue Ridge Mountains here in the heart of Appalachia. The cost of supporting and visiting Eddie keeps going up, so Pat makes trade-offs.

More here…


One Response to “Prison Bankers Cash in on Captive Customers”
  1. Kathleen says:

    Ali Velshi (AJAM, 7-8 EDT) had a similar story. I also read about a judge who was an investor in a a juvenile detention facility and had begun sending kids there, kids who’d done very ittle wrong.

    Did you now there’s a distracting pop-up on your site?

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